City of Orlando Obtains Highest Score on Municipal Equality Index for Sixth-Consecutive Year
November 19, 2019 – Orlando, FL – The Human Rights Campaign released its annual Municipal Equality Index (MEI) on Tuesday and the City of Orlando has obtained the highest score of 100 for the sixth-consecutive year. The 2019 MEI examines how inclusive municipal laws, polices and services are of LGBTQ+ people for residents and visitors.
The report evaluates 506 cities on 25 different criteria, including non-discrimination laws and municipal employment policies like transgender-inclusive insurance coverage, all-user restrooms and non-discrimination requirements for contractors; inclusiveness of city services; law enforcement, including hate crimes reporting and municipal leadership on matters of equality.
“I am proud that the City of Orlando has once again obtained a perfect score in the Municipal Equality Index. Our community is welcoming and inclusive and as a city we remain committed to continuing to work together to promote diversity and equality in everything that we do,” said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer.
The City of Orlando was one of 88 municipalities nationally and six in Florida to receive a perfect score.
“Considering the state of national affairs, I am glad that cities are leading in the fair treatment of their LGBTQ+ citizens,” said District 4 Commissioner Patty Sheehan. “Orlando continues to value the diversity and unique contributions of the LGBTQ+ community.”
The City of Orlando has been a leader in Florida and throughout the nation in establishing local programs, ordinances and laws that benefit the LGBTQ+ community, including:
- Installing the first all-user multi-stall restroom in a public building in Florida to ensure that transgender individuals, elderly or disabled individuals who need assistance from caretakers from different genders, or parents of children of a different gender can use restrooms in city hall without fear of discrimination or harassment.
- Passing a resolution to support LGBTQ+ certified owned business through the creation of a database of certified LGBTQ+ businesses and providing educational opportunities for members to learn about the city’s procurement.
- Adopting a Transgender Persons Policy for the Orlando Police Department with guidelines to establish the appropriate treatment of transgender individuals who come into contact with or require the services of the police department.
- Providing more than $200,000 in funding in last two years to LGBTQ+ organizations committed to provide social, educational, food, transportation and homelessness services to our LGBTQ+ youth and seniors, including the One Orlando Alliance, Zebra Coalition, LGBT+ Center Orlando, Inc. and Hope & Help Center of Central Florida.
The 2019 Municipal Equality Index (MEI) can be found at http://www.hrc.org/mei